Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

a

At trifles oft she'd scold and fret,

A will subdu'd to reason's fivay, Then in a corner take a seat,

And passions practis'd to obey ;
And, fourly moping all the day,

An
open

and a gen'rous heart, Disclain alike to work or play.

Refind from fellihness and art; Papa all softer arts had tried,

Patience, which mocks at fortune's powits And tharper remedies applied;

And wisdom never fad nor four : But both were vain ; for ev'ry course

In thele confifts our proper bliis; He took, still made her worse and worse. Elle Mato reasons much amiss : 'Tis strange to think how female wit

But foolish moitals still pursue So oft should make a lucky hit;

Talte happiness in place of true; When man, with all his high pretence

Ambition ferves us for a guide, To deeper judgment, founder lente,

Or lust, or avarice, or pride; Will err, and mcalures false pursue

While Reason no affent can gain, 'Tis very strange', I own, but true.

And Revelation warns in vain. Mamma observ'd ti riling lats

Hence through our lives, in ev'ry stage, By stealth retiring to the glass,

From infancy itself to age, To practise little airs untiin,

A happiness we toil to ind, In the true genius «f thirteer:

Which still avoids us like the wind; On this a deep design the laid

Er'n when we think the prize our own To tame the bumour of the Maid;

At once 'tis vanith'd, left and gone. Contriving, like a prudent mother,

You'll ask me why I thus rehearse To make one folly cure another.

All Epičletus in my verse ? Upon the wall, against the fiat

And if I fondly hope to please Which Jelly us'd for her retreat,

With dry reflections, such as these, Whene'er by accident offended,

So trite, lo hackrevd, and so itale? A looking-glass was straight fufpended,

I'll take the lint, and tell a tale.
That it might Thew her how deform d

One evening as a simple liv ain
She look'd, and frightful, when the ftormd; His fiock attended on the plain,
And warn her, as she priz'd her beauty, The shining bow he chanc'd to spy,
To bend her humour to her duty.

Which warns us when a fhow'r is nigh;
All this the looking-glafs atchiev'd;

Il'ith brightest rays it feem'd to glow; Its threats were minded and belici'd.

its distance eighty yards or 10. The Maid, who spurn`d at all advice, This humpkin had, it seems, been told Grew tame and gentle in a trice :

The story of the cup of gold, So, when all other means had faild,

Which fame reports is to be found The filent monitor prevail'd.

Just where the Rainbow meets the ground: Thus, Fable to the human-kind

He therefore felt a sudden itch Presents an image of the mind;

To seize the goblet, and be rich; It is a mirror, where we spy

Hoping, yet hopes are oft but vain,
At large our own deforinity;

No more to toil thro’ wind and rain;
And learn of course those faults to mend, But fit indulging by the fire,
Which but to mention would offend.

Midft cafe and plenty, like a 'squire.

He mark'd the very ipot of land § 256. The Boy and the Rainbow. Wilkie.' On which the Rainbow seem'd to stand, DECLARE, ye.fages, if ye find

And stepping forwards at his leilure, 'Mongst animals of ev'ry kind,

Expected to have found the treature. Of each condition, fort, and lize,

But as he mov'd, the colour'd ray From whales and elephants to Aies,

Still chang'd its place, and lipt away, A crcature that mistakes his plan,

As seeming his approach to thun. And errs so constantly as man.

From walking he began to run; Each kind pursues his proper good,

But all in vain, it ftill with row And fecks for pleasure, reit, and food,

As nimbly as he could pursue. As nature points, and never errs

At last, thro' many a bog and lake, In what it chooses and prefers;

Rough craggy roail, and thorny brake, Man only blunders, though posle

It led the caly fool, till night Of talents far above the rest.

Approach'd, then vanith'd in his fight, Defcend to instances, and try ;

And left him to compute his gains, an ox will scarce attempt to fly,

With nought but labour for his pains.
Or leave his pasture in the wood,
With fishes to explore the flood.
Man only acts, of ev'ry creatura,

A

YOUTH, a pupil of the town, In opposition to his nature.

Philosopher and atheist grown, The happincts of human-kind

Benighted once upon the road, Coplist in rectitude of mind;

Found out a hermit's lone abode,

§ 257.

The Rake and ibe Hermit. WILKIE.

Whose

a

a

a

a

Whofe hospitality in need

'Tis strange, that man, a reas'ning creature;. Reliev'd the trav'ller and his steed;

Should miss a God in viewing nature; For both fufficiently were tir'd,

Wbote high perfections are display'd Weil drench'd in ditches, and bemir'd.

In ev'ry thing his hands have made : Hunger the first attention claims;

Ev’n when we think their traces loft. l'pon the coals a rather flames.

When found again, we see them most: Dry crusts, and liquor something stalo,

The night itself, which you would blamg Here added to make up a meal;

As fomething wrong in nature's frame, At which our travller, as he fat,

Is but a curtain to invest By intervals began to chat.

Her weary children, when at reft:
'Tis odd, quoth he, to think what strains Like that which mothers draw to keep
Of folly govern some folks brains:

The light off from a child ascep.
What makes you choose this wild abode ? Beside, the fears which darkness breeds
You'll say, 'tis to converse with God.

(At least augments) in vulgar heads, Alas, I fear, 'tis áll a whim ;

Are far from useless, when the mind You never saw or spoke with him.

Is narrow, and to earth confin'd; They talk of Providence's pow'r, "

They make the worldling think with pair, And say, it rules us ev'ry hour:

On frauds, and oaths, arid ill-got gain ; To me all nature leems confusion,

Force from the ruffian's hand the knife And fuch weak fancies mere delusion.

Just rais'd against his neighbour's life; Sat, if it rul'd and govern'd right,

And in defence of virtue's cause, Could there be such a thing as night;

Alif each sanction of the laws. Which, when the sun has left the skies,

But souls serene, where wisdom dwells, Puts all things in a deep dilguise?

And fuperftitious dread expels, If then a trav'ller chance to stray

The filent majesty of night The least ftep from the public way,

Excites to take a nobler fight; He's foon in codiefs mazes loft,

With saints and angels to explore Is I have found it to my coft.

The wonders of creating pow'r; Belides, the gloom which nature wears And lifts on contemplation's wings dintis imaginary fears,

Above the sphere of mortal things. Of ghosts and goblins from the waves

Walk forth, and tread those dewy plains Of fulph'rous lakes and yawning graves; Where night in awful silence reigns; Alliprung from superstitious feed,

The sky's ferené, the air is still, Like other maxims of the creed.

The woods stand lift'ning on cach hill, For my part, I reject the tales

To catch the founds that sink and swell, Which faith suggests when reason fails ; Wide-Hoating from the ev’ning bell, And reason nothing understands,

While foxes howl, and beetles hum, Unwarranted by eyes and hands.

Sounds which make silence still more dumb: Thele fubtile essences, like wind,

And try if folly, rath and rude, Which funne have dreamt of, and call mind, Dare on the sacred hour intrude. It ne'er admits; nor joins the lye,

Then turn your eyes to heaven's broad frame, Which says men rot, but never die.

Attempt to quote those lights by name li holds all future things in doubt,

Which shine fo thick, and spread to far; And therefore wisely Icaves them out:

Conceive a sun in ev'ry star, Suggesting what is worth our care,

Round which unnumber'd planets roll, To take things, present as they are,

While comets Thoot.athwart the whole; Our wilcft course: the reft is tolly,

From system ftill to fyltem ranging, The fruit of spleen and melancholy.

Thcir various benefits exchanging, Sir, quoth the Hermit, I agree

And thaking from their flaming hair That Reafon fill our guide thould be :

The things most needed ev'rywhereAnd will adinit her as the test

Explore this glorious scene, and lay Of what is true, and what is beft;

That night discovers less than day; But Reafon sure wou'd bluth for thame

That 'tis quite ufelets, and a lign At what you mention in her name;

That chance difpofes, not dengn: Her dictates are sublime and holy;

Whoc'er maintains it, I'll pronounce Impiety's the child of Folly;

Him rither mad, or elle a Junce; Rezion, with mcasur'd fteps and Now,

For reason, tho' 'tis far from Itrong,
To things above from things below

Will foon find out that nothing's wrong
Ascends, and guides us thro' her sphere From ligns and evidences clear,
With caution, vigilance, and care.

Of wise contrivance ev'rywhere.
Faith in the utmost frontier stands,

The Hermit ended, and the youth And Reason puts us in her hands;

Became a convert to the truth; But not till her commiilion giv'n

At least he yielded, and confefs'd
I found authentic, and from Heav'n,

That all
was order'd for the best.

a

a

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

$ 258. The Youth and the Philofopber. Who reads my page will doubtless grant

W. WHITEHEAD. That Phe's the wise industrious Ant;

And all with half an eye may see
A

GRECIAN youth, of talents rare,
Whom Plato's philosophic care

That Kitty is the busy Bee.
Had form'd for virtue's nobler view,

Here then are two-but where's the third ? By precept and example too,

Go search the school, you'll find the bird, Would often boast his matchless skill

Your school! I alk your pardon, Fair; To curb the steed, and guide the wheel ;

I'm sure you'll find no sparrow there. And as he pass’d the gazing throng

Now to my tale-One summer's morn With graceful ease, and smack'd the thong,

A Bee rang' o'er the verdant lawn; The idiot wonder they express’d

Studious to husband ev'ry hour, Was praise and transport to his breast.

And make the most of ev'ry flow'r. At length, quite vain, he needs would shew

Nimble from stalk to stalk she flies, His matter what his art could do ;

And loads with yellow wax her thighs ; And bade his slaves the chariot lead

With which the artist builds her comb, To Academus' sacred shade.

And keeps all tight and warm at home : The trembling grove confess’d its fright,

Or from the cowslip's golden bells The wood-nymphs started at the sight;

Sucks honey, to enrich her cells : The Muses dropt the learned lyre,

Or ev'ry tempting rose pursues, And to their inmost shades retire.

Or sips the lily's fragrant dews; Howe'er the youth, with forward air,

Yet never robs the thining bloom Bows to the fage, and mounts the car ;

Or of its beauty or perfume. The lath resounds, the coursers spring,

Thus she discharg'd in ev'ry way The chariot marks the rolling ring;

The various duties of the day. And gath'ring crowds, with cager eyes,

It chanc'd a frugal Ant was near, And thouts, pursue him as he Kies.

Whole brow was wrinkled o'er by care ! Triumphant to the goal return'd,

A great æconomift was the, With nobler thirst his bosom burn'd;

Nor less laborious than the Bee; And now along th' indented plain

By pensive parents often taught The self-fäme track he marks again;

What ills arise from want of thought; Pursues with care the nice design,

That poverty on Noth depends; Nor ever deviates from the line.

On poverty the loss of friends. Amazement feiz'd the circling crowd ;

Hence ev'ry day the Ant is found The youths with emulation glow'd;

With anxious steps to tread the ground; Ev'n bearded fages hail'd thc boy,

With curious search to trace the grain, And all but Plato gaz'd with joy.

And drag the heavy load with pain. For he, deep-judging sage, beheld

The active Bee with pleasure saw With pain the triumphs of the field :

The Ant fulfil her parent's law. And when the charioteer drew nigh,

Ah ! lister-labourer, says the, And, Auth'd with hope, had caught his eye,

How very fortunate are we ! Alas! unhappy youth, he cried,

Who, taught in infancy to know Expect no praise from ine (and sigh’d).

The comforts which from labour flow, With indignation I survey

Are independent of the great, Such skill and judgment thrown away.

Nor know the wants of pride and state. The time profusely squander'd there

Why is our food fo very fwect : On vulgar arts, beneath thy care,

Because we earn before we eat. If well employ'd, at less expence,

Why are our wants so very few ? Had taught thee honour, virtue, senso,

Becaute we nature's calls pursue. And rais d thee from a coachman's fate

Whence our complacency of mind!
To govern men, and guide the state.

Because we act our parts allign’d.
Have we incessant talks to do?

Is not all nature busy too ? $ 259. Tbe Bee, the Ant, and tbe Sparrow.

Doth not the sun, with constant pace, Addressed to Phæbe and Kitty C. at Boarding- Do not the stars, which thine fo bright,

Persift to run his annual race?
School. Dr. Cotton. Renew their courses ev'ry night?
Y dears, 'tis said in days of old,

Doth not the ox obcdicnt bow
That beasts could talk, and birds could fcadd : His patient neck, and draw the plough?
But now, it seems the human race
Alone engrofs the speaker's place.

Or when did e'er the gen'rous steed

Withhold his labour or his speed? Yct lately, if report be true,

If you all nature's lystem scan, (And much the tale relates to you)

The only idle thing is man.
There met a Sparrow, Ant, and Bee,
Which reafen'd and convers'd as wę,

A wanton Sparrow long'd to hear
Their lage discourse, and Itraight drew near,

MY

[ocr errors]

The bird was talkative and loud,

The fame our taste, the fame our school, And very pert and very proud;

Pallion and appetite our rule; As worthless and as vain a thing,

And call dcbird, or call me sinner, Perhaps, as ever wore a wing.

I'll ne'e sforego my sport or dinner. She found, as on a spray she lat,

A prowling cat the miscreant spies, The little friends were deep in chat;

And wide expands her amber eyes: That virtue was their fav’rite theme,

Ncar and more near Grimalkin draws; And toil and probity their scheme :

She wags her tail, protends her paws; Such talk was hateful to her breast;

Then, springing on her thoughtless prey, She thought them arrant prudes at best.

She bore the vicious bird away. When to display her naughty mind,

Thus, in her cruelty and pride,
Hunger with cruelty combin'd,

The wicked wanton Sparrow died.
She view'd the Ant with lavage eyes,
And hopt and hope to snatch her prize.

$ 260. The Bears and Bees. MERRICK. The Bee, who watch'd her op'ning bill,

A

S two young Bears in wanton mood, And guess'd her fell design to kill,

Forth issuing from a neighb'ring wood, Ak'd her from what her anger role,

Came where th’industrious Bees had stor'd And why the treated Ants as foes ?

In artful cells their luscious hoard; The Sparrow her reply began,

O’erjoy'd they fciz'd with cager haste And thus the conversation ran :

Luxurious on the rich repast. Whenever I'm dispos’d to dine,

Alarm’d at this, the little crew I think the whole crcation mine;

About their cars vindiêtive flew. That I'm a bird of high degree,

The beasts, unable to sustain And ev'ry insect made for me.

Th'uncqual combat, quit the plain ; Hence oft I search the emmet-brood

Half blind with rage, and mad with pain, (For emmets are delicious food)

Their native Thelter they regain ; And oft, in wantonness and play,

There sit, and now, discreeter grown, I flay ten thousand in a day.

Too late their rashness they bemoan ; For truth it is, without disguise,

And this by dear experience gain, That I love mischief as my eyes.

That pleasure's ever bought with pain.
Oh! fie, the honest Bee replied,

So when the gilded baits of vice
I fear you make bale man your guide; Are plaç'd before our longing eyes,
Of ev'ry creature sure the worst,

With greedy haste we Inatch our fill,
Though in creation's scale the first!

And fivallow down the latent ill; U'ngrateful man ! 'tis strange he thrives, But when experience opes our eyes, Who burns the Bees to rob their hives !

Away the fancy'd pleasure flies: I hate his vile administration,

It fies, but oh! too late we find
And to do all the einmet nation.

It Icaves a real fting behind.
What fatal foes to birds are men,
Quite to the Eagle from the Wren!

§ 261. Tbe Camelion. MERRICK. o ! do not men's example take, Who mischief do for mischief's sake;

OFT has it been my lot to mark

A proud conceited talking spark, But spare the Ant-her worth demands

With eyes, that hardly serv'd at most Eftecm and friendship at your hands.

To guard their master 'gainst a poft ; A mind with ev'ry virtue bleft,

Yet round the world the blade has been, Muft raise compallon in your breast.

To see whatever could be seen : Virtue ! rejoin'd the fuccring bird,

Returning from his finish'd tour, Where did you learn that Gothic word?

Grown ten times perter than before, Since I was hatch'd, I never heard

Whatever word you chance to drop, That virtue was at all rever'd.

The travellia fool your mouth will stop : But say it was the ancients claim,

“Sir, if my judgment you'll allowYet moderns disavow the name;

“ I've seen--and sure I ought to know”. Unless, my dear, you read romances,

So begs you'd pay a due submission, I cannot reconcile your fancics.

And acquicsce in his decision. Virtue in fairy tales is seen

Two travellers of such a cast, To play the goddess or the queen;

As o'er Arabia's wilds they pass'd, But what's a queen without the pow'r ?

And on their way in friendly chat Or beauty, child, without a dow'r?

Now talk'd of this, and then of that, Yet this is all that virtue brags,

Discours’d a while, 'mongst other matter, At best 'tis only worth in rags..

Of the Camelion's form and nature. Such whims my very heart derides :

“ A stranger animal,” cries one, Indeed you make me burst my fides.

" Sure never liv'd beneath the sun : Trust me, Miss Bee-to speak the truth,

“ A lizard's body, lean and long, I've copied men from earlick youth;

“ A fish's head, a lerpent's tongue;

end?

* Its foot with triple claw disjoin'd;

Scarce had the thund'rer giv'n tłe nod “ And what a length of tail behind !

That shook the vaulted lkies, • How slow its pace! and then its hue

With haughtier air the creatures strode, 6 Who ever law to fine a blue?"

And stretch'd their dwindled lize. • Hold there,' the other quick replies,

The hair in curls luxuriant now • 'Tis green,- I faw it wit theie

eyes, • As late with open mouth it lay,

Around their temples spread; · And warm'd it in the sunny ray;

The tail, that whilom hung below, • Stretch'd at its ease the beait I view'd,

Now dangled from the head. And saw it eat the air for food.'

The head remains unchang'd within, , « I've seen it, Sir, as well as you,

Nor alter'd much the face; " And must again affirun it blue.

It still retains its native grin, • At leisure I the beast survey'd,

And all its old grimace. “ Extended in the cooling shade."

Thus half transform’d, and half the fame, • 'Tis green, 'tis green, Sir, I assure ye.'- Jore bade them take their place u Green !" cries the other in a fury

(Restoring them their ancient claim) Why, Sir, d’ye think I've lost my cyes?" Among the human race. • 'Twere no great lois,' the friend replies, • For, if they always serve you thus,

Man with contempt the brute furrey'd, • You'll find them but of little use.'

Nor would a name befow; So high at last the contest rose,

But woman lik’d the motley breed, From words they almost came to blows :

And callid the thing a beau. When luckily came by a third

§ 263. Know Thyzelf. AREUTHNOT. To him the question they referrd;

WHAT am I? how produc'd ? and for what And begg'd he'd tell 'em, if he knew Whether the thing was green or blue.

Whence drew I being to what period tend ? Sirs,” cries the umpire, “ cease your pother, Am I th'abandon d orphan of blind chance, * The creature's ncither one nor t'other: Dropp'd by wild atoms in disorder'd dance? * I caught the animal last night,

Or from an endless chain of causes wrought, « And view'd it o'er by candle-light:

And of unthinking fuistance, born with tħough:! “ I mark'd it well-'twas black as jet

By motion which began without a cause, 6 You stare-but, Sirs, I've got

Supremely wise, without design or laws ? “ And can produce it." Pray, Sir, do: Am I but what I feem, mcre flesh and blood • I'll lay my life, the thing is blue.'

1 branching channel, with a

flood? “ And I'll be sworn, that when you've seen The purple #tream that through my vesels glides, ** The reptile, you'll pronounce him green.” Dull and unconscious flows, like commoa tides ;

• Well then, at once, to case the doubt,' The pipes through which the circling juices ftray, Replies the man, I'll turn him out:

Are not that thinking I, no more than they; • And when before your eyes I've set him,

This frame, compacted with transcendant ikill • If you don't find him black, I'll eat him.' Of moving joints obedient to my will, He said ; then full before their fight

Nurs'd from the fruitful globe, like yonder tree, Produc'd the beast, and lo—'twas white.

Waxes and wastes; I call it mine, not me. Both star'd; the man look'd wondrous wife

New matter still the mould'ring mass fuftains ; “ My children,” the Camelioa cries

The mantion chang’d, the tenant still remains; (Then first the creature found a tongue) And from the fleeting stream, repaird by food, You all are right, and all are wrong:

Distinct, as is the swimmer from the flood. “ When next you talk of what you view,

What am I then fure of a noble birth; “ Think others see as well as you :

By parents right, I own as mother, Earth; “ Nor wonder, if you find that none

But claim superior lineage by my fire, “ Prefers your eye-light to his own.”

Who warm’d th' unthinking clod with heavenly

Ellence divine, with lifeless clay allay'd, (fire ; § 262. The Monkeys. A Tale. MERRICK.

By double nature, double instinct sway'd: WHOE'ER, with curious eye, has rang’d

With lock erect, I dart my longing eye,
Through Ovid's tales, has seen

Secm wing’d to part, and gain my native sys How Jove, incens'd, to Monkeys chang'a

I strive to mount, but itrive, alas! in vain, A tribe of worthless men.

Tied to this maliy globe with magic chain.

Now with swift thought I range from pole to poles Repentant foon, th'offending race

View worlds around their flaming centres roll: Intreat the injur'd pow'r To give them back the human face,

What steady pow's their endless motions guide And reason's aid restore.

Through the same trackless paths of boundless

I trace the blazing comet's fiery tail, Jove, sooth'd at length, his ear inclin'd,

And weigh the whirling planets in a scale; And granted half their pray'r !

Thele godlike thoughts while eager I pursue, But t'other half he bade the wind Difperte in empty air.

Some glitt'ring trifle offer'd to my view,

it yet,

mazy

[ocr errors]

(void)

A gaat

,

« PreviousContinue »